Shannon Osbourne was recently on Steve-O’s “Wild Ride” podcast and was asked if it was true that Black Sabbath reunited almost a decade ago under her terms because Ozzy owned the Black Sabbath name and the other members were only “employees” of the band. Sharon went on to confirm this and also mentioned that her husband and guitarist Tony Iommi equally own the rights to the band.
“It’s about right, but Ozzy and Tony own the name — Geezer [Butler, bass] and Bill [Ward, drums] don’t. So it’s Ozzy and Tony that own the name, and they are partners in Black Sabbath. So you’re kind of right. Ozzy and Tony are equal, and at the time, the other guys, you know, it’s kind of like pay-for-play.”
For a recap of what happened, back in May 2009, Ozzy filed a lawsuit on Iommi for illegally taking sole ownership of the band name and sued him for 50% interest in the Black Sabbath trademark. Ozzy and The Manhattan federal court also went on to say that his “signature lead vocals” were responsible for the band’s “extraordinary success,” mentioning that the band’s popularity dropped when he left during 1980 through 1996. Iommi’s lawyer Andrew DeVore argued that Osbourne signed away all his rights to the Black Sabbath trademark after he quit the band in 1979.
Fortunately, back in 2010 during an interview on The Pulse of Radio, Ozzy said the lawsuit between him and Tony was settled and that everything was okay between them.
You can watch the clip of Sharon Steve-O’s “Wild Ride” podcast below!